RHS Chelsea Flower Show 2024

This year visitors can catch a glimpse of the Roman Empire at RHS Chelsea Flower Show. The Newt team of architects and horticulturists have recreated a colonnaded courtyard similar to those found in ancient Pompeii. Taking inspiration from Villa Ventorum at the Newt, we have created a peristyle garden, typical of that seen in a flourishing household at the height of the Roman Empire. Visitors will be invited to step back in time and immerse themselves in the colours, fragrances and planting styles of the era.

A Roman Garden

Located on Main Avenue, the Roman Garden will follow the style of the 1st Century CE, maximising light and air within a compact space. Every inch will showcase the Romans’ careful eye for design and the interplay between nature and architecture. Aesthetic choices of colour, fragrance and ornamental planting will create a moment of joy and repose, whilst medicinal planting will highlight the Romans’ knowledge of plants’ health and wellbeing properties. This dual purpose still resonates today, with much to be learned by the modern gardener.

The peristyle garden will feature 1,600 individual plants of 13 different varieties, informed by the popular choices of 1st Century CE. A mulberry tree will take centre stage, flanked by wild cherry and pomegranate trees on either side. Medicinal plants including chamomile and lavender have been chosen for their relaxing, soothing properties, whilst opium poppy has been selected for pain relief, thyme to relieve coughs, colds and infections. From a decorative perspective, four Roman Herms (sculptures) will create a focal point with fountains placed at each corner of the garden and braziers positioned at each end. The central garden will be encircled by a water channel, effective for collecting rainwater and irrigating the plants. The walls enclosing the courtyard will be decorated with frescoes, which were typical of the period.

Official Cyder of Chelsea

Our favourite West Country tipple takes centre stage, as The Newt’s Fine Cyder once again becomes the official cyder of the RHS Chelsea Flower Show. Visitors will enjoy tastings, led by Head Cyder Maker, Lloyd Knapton. Made with specially selected dessert apples and using modern techniques, this super-fresh, still cyder is the perfect refreshment for a busy show day. The stand features a display of Bramley apples and product showcases of the full cyder range.

Sample our Fine Cyder at home with our show special case price of 6 bottles for the price of 5 for the chance to WIN a two night hotel stay (T&Cs apply).

Best of Friends

Our friends in South Africa, at Babylonstoren, are getting in on the act again this year, giving visitors to the show the first opportunity to sip the newly-released Mourvèdre Rosé 2024 – the official rosé of RHS Chelsea. With subtle notes of rose petals and ripe berries, the dry and elegant wine transports you to the magnificent gardens at Babylonstoren – a historic Cape Dutch working farm, winery and hotel in the Franschhoek wine valley. To complement the rosé’s pale orange and pink-tinted hues, the stand will be decorated with a multitude of pink protea cynaroides to celebrate South Africa’s national flower.

Sample this exceptional wine at home with our show special case price of 6 bottles for the price of 5 for a chance to WIN a two night hotel stay (T&Cs apply).

The Romans are Coming

Villa Ventorum, meaning ‘Palace of the Winds’ - is a pioneering archaeological and educational experience. A life-size replica of a ruined Romano-British Villa dating back to 351 CE, includes rooms with fresco walls and mosaic floors, kitchens, a bathhouse, productive gardens and a vineyard. The new villa sits alongside an engaging, technology-led visitor centre and museum, carefully positioned over the original villa’s foundations and ruins.

Both the villa and museum offer a window into life in a Romano-British household – including the sounds, smells, and sights of daily rituals, staying true to archaeological evidence. This experience has inspired our garden at RHS Chelsea Flower Show 2024.

Stephen Herrington, Head Gardener at The Newt in Somerset and Co-Designer, notes: “Planting in the horticultural traditions of the Roman Empire has been a fascinating journey. Drawing on our team’s passion and expertise, we are aiming to convey to the modern visitor the sense of joy that the Romans would have derived through the scent and colour of their gardens.”

Chelsea Competition

Every purchase of our Show Special 6 for 5 deal on Fine Cyder and Rosé gets entered into a draw to WIN a two-night stay at The Newt in Somerset (T&Cs apply).

Grow Slowly

The best things in life take time. Gardening is about nurturing nature and working with the seasons. Many of the gardens at RHS Chelsea this year are highlighting our changing climate and the importance of conserving water, but also designing flood resistant and resilient gardens. Our Roman garden has a rill that collects rain water so that it can be used to irrigate the planting, we have also used many Mediterranean plants that are drought resistant. We can all think about where the water goes in our gardens and put it to good use - be more Roman!

Free Shipping

Receive free shipping from Somerset on all online shop purchases over £60. Explore our range of fresh and seasonal produce, grown by our gardeners, crafted by our chefs and delivered on a day of your choosing by our team.

Shop Now